Actually, it's been half a year since I had a staycation at Horison Green Forest Bandung. The reason why it took so long for me to write the review of my experience was that… I had it so bad that I wasn't even sure whether it was worth the effort to write about it.
I got a chance to have a staycation at several hotels in Bandung. From Chez Bon Hostel, the budget hostel where my late uncle used to own the place a couple of years ago to hotels like Blackbird Hotel and the legendary Savoy Homann. By far, my experience at Horison Green Forest Bandung has been the worst staycation that I've ever had in my hometown.
Honestly, I only decided to write my review of the hotel as I had a chat with Gema the other day, and he also told me that he had a bad experience staying at Green Forest…
So, what does make the property so bad?
Horison Green Forest Bandung
Horison Green Forest Bandung is more known as The Green Forest Resort in Bandung. Honestly, I just found out that the property is now managed by Horison when I arrived at the hotel to check-in.
The Green Forest Resort had gained popularity a few years ago when I just graduated from university. It is probably one of the first hotels in Bandung that has a little chapel on its property that makes it an instagrammable spot for a wedding.
Horison is Indonesian-based hotel management that has been quite well-known for years. As a person originally from Bandung, there's Horison Ultima Hotel in the other part of the city that has been in the business for a long time, although I never got a chance to stay there to talk more about it.
Back when I was a kid, Horison Hotel used to be seen as one of the luxury hotels in Bandung, so I thought that maybe they offer a top-notch service at Horison Green Forest Bandung. Boy, was I wrong!
My First Impression at Horison Green Forest Bandung
I booked a family room there for my staycation at Horison Green Forest Bandung, and I spent IDR 1,924,600 (around $132.80) for one night. The location isn't so far from my previous staycation at Blackbird Hotel. Still, I spent more on a family room at The Green Forest Resort. Spoilers alert, it wasn't even worth it!
When I arrived, the lobby was quite cramped. I had to get in line to check-in, and it took me around 20 minutes until I got checked in. The staff wasn't that friendly, and their procedure was to hold your ID while you're staying at their property.
I'm not even the kind of guest who would expect someone to help me out with my bags when I checked into a hotel room, but I had a staycation with my mom and my siblings at the time… The lobby and our room are quite distanced, and the hotel seems understaffed, although I understand that it might have something to do with the pandemic situation.
Our family room is located below the swimming pool. We could either take the stairs not so far from the pool or an elevator close to the restaurant. Either way, I wouldn't recommend you if you bring an elderly who couldn't walk too far because it required a lot of walking.
The Family Room at Horison Green Forest Bandung
If you're planning to stay at Horison Green Forest Bandung with your family, there are also some other room options available other than Family Room. However, judging by the room's location that's closer to the chapel, I would say that the Family Room is often used as the bride and the groom's family if they have the wedding there.
As I booked a room for 4 pax, the room is quite spacious, with 2 bed rooms in total—one with a queen-sized bed, and the other with the twin beds. There's no air conditioner in the room, but it's understandable given the idea that the northern Bandung has more chill weather than the city center.
There's also a connecting door to the next room, which makes more sense as it's obvious that the Family Room is designated for the bride and the groom's family. The downside of it? When I stayed there, the next room was traveling with one or two small kids, and they kept knocking on our door, it got annoying after a while.
It's more like a suite-style than a regular hotel room as the room comes with a bar and a living room. But other than that, there's nothing so special about the room.
There's a balcony close to the master bedroom with a view of the bamboo forest in the resort. The good news is that there's a couch on the balcony, so you can just chill and enjoy the scenery there. The bad news is that the area is prone to bugs and moths.
Everything looked okay when we checked in, although it didn't take too long until we realized that the wifi connection wasn't working in our room. My sister had to work in late afternoon at the time, and the wifi didn't work in any of our devices so we had to use our mobile data for the internet.
Review: Staycation at Horison Green Forest Bandung
If you happened to read some of the reviews I wrote about the hotels where I stayed before, you know I didn't ask much about the accommodation. I could stay in various kinds of hotels just fine. From a love hotel in Ho Chi Minh City to even a tiny room at Days Hotel in Hong Kong.
But, but I believe in the idea of how I should get what I paid for. And the reason why I think Horison Green Forest Bandung is by far the most disappointing staycation experience that I've had was that I didn't get what I paid for. Here's why!
The Family Room
I love the idea of the suite for the family room, but I'm definitely not a fan of having a connecting door to the next room. Especially not with another guest that kept knocking on my door. It's just annoying.
Although to be fair, when it comes to the Family Room layout, this looks like one room where you could stay for a relatively long term. There's a small refrigerator with the fridge. While it's impossible to cook, it seems adequate to prepare some easy food like a sandwich or salad.
The living room is quite cozy to just chill with your family, playing board games, or even just having your meals. The teapot is available with some tea and coffee too, it has the basic necessity in a room. And even there's no air conditioner, I could assure you that you don't need one since the weather is chill around there.
When we entered the room, some areas in the room looked a bit dusty. I'm not sure when was the last time they cleaned the room, but it was definitely not super clean. But that's okay, because at least everything else didn't look as bad.
That, until by evening, the moths started entering the room and sticking to the bed in the master bedroom. My sister and my mom got the master bedroom, while my brother and I slept on the twin bed. They had to shoo away the moths first before sleeping, while my brother and I didn't have the problem.
While we could live without the wifi connection, the idea of the moths on the bed really made me feel like I didn't get what I paid for my staycation this time. But there's more!
The shower stinks. I mean, everything else was functional. The water heater worked okay, but honestly… You go for a shower to refresh yourself. It's kinda a turn off when it stinks.
It smells like humidity, which is quite common for bathrooms, except for this one comes a little way too strong. I really don't like to complain about every little thing, but Horison Green Forest Bandung went above and beyond to make sure that I'll never have to stay there again.
This is not the kind of staycation that I have in mind.
The Room Service
As I previously mentioned, The Green Forest Resort is huge, and it's not so suitable if you travel with the elderly who has a problem when they have to walk too much. Let alone the elderly, if you don't get used to walking too far, it may be a downside for you.
Around the pool, it seems like there's a restaurant there. But, when we went there, there was no staff around. So we went back to our room and ordered room service instead since the weather was a bit gloomy when we were there. We assumed that given the idea it might be raining, if we order delivery service, we still had to walk to pick up our order, and it wouldn't be an easy walk.
The room service is quite pricey, but I expected that… But again, I wouldn't mind paying if I actually enjoy the food and whatnot.
My mom and sister had nasi liwet, and my brother played it safe with ayam penyet. As for me, I was supposed to have buntut bakar or grilled oxtail as I confirmed with the room service that I'd still get the soup if I ordered that one.
But I knew that my order was messed up when it arrived, although I was too lazy to make a big fuss out of it since I was already hangry at the time.
Instead of grilled oxtail, they brought the oxtail soup instead. And the soup wasn't even hot. Not even lukewarm because it was only the pot that was hot, but the soup was not.
The kerupuk that came up with ayam geprek was inedible, I felt like I lost money for this. 🙁
The Swimming Pool
But it wasn't until the next day when I was ready to swim first before I went for breakfast at 8. I went there, I was ready with my bathing suit and then one of the staff (that wasn't around the day before when I wanted to order some food) approached me to tell me that I wasn't allowed to swim now because some influencer would come around to have a photoshoot there at 10 AM.
I don't know why I couldn't use the swimming pool when clearly the photoshoot wouldn't happen until 2 hours later, but so I came back to my room complaining to my mom about how bad this hotel was!
At that point, I didn't know who I hate more… Whether it is Horison Green Forest Bandung or the influencer.
Since the resort is quite huge, I wasn't really sure whether the breakfast area is close by. Well, it's not. It's quite a walking distance, and apparently the shortcut from our hotel was under construction, so we had to take a longer route to get to the restaurant.
It wasn't really a big deal for me, the challenging part was that my mom had a knee problem, and as enjoyable as it was for her, I knew it wasn't as easy for her.
The breakfast was a buffet, and they had a few options at the stall. From porridge, the standard fried rice, and… They had jamu or Indonesian herbal drinks in the beverage stall!
I'm not sure if I've ever seen jamu as a beverage option for breakfast at the hotel, so I guess it was certainly the first time!
There wasn't anything fancy about the breakfast, except for jamu part. It was okay, but nothing really that special either. Although to be fair, since the restaurant was quite far from my room, the taste of what's in the breakfast stall wasn't really worth the journey. Like, I could've skipped the breakfast if I knew it was not that special.
My Final Verdict: Horison Green Forest Bandung
Based on my personal experience, I wouldn't recommend Horison Green Forest Bandung for a staycation. Heck, I wouldn't even recommend it if you come to Bandung for a vacation!
Don't get me wrong! I rarely leave a disheartening comment on the property that I stayed in, but I got way too many bad experiences in one night at Horison Green Forest Bandung that I wouldn't recommend in one bit.
- Now that I think about it, I suppose the only good thing about Horison Green Forest Bandung is that little chapel that is quite a cute spot for a photograph. Because other than that, not so much…
- If you like chill weather, the northern part of Bandung is a place that you might want to consider staying if you stop by my hometown. Although if that's the case, I'd probably recommend Blackbird Hotel more than this property.
- It's probably the only hotel where I could find bolster on the bed.
- It's quite pricey, and I didn't get what I paid for.
- The staff wasn't so friendly, except for the guys at the restaurant who assisted us during breakfast.
- The room service was horrible, but the operator was so much worse. I think it took around 30 minutes for me to get connected to the operator through the landline.
- I wasn't allowed to use the swimming pool because of some influencer, and it was a top-notch turn off for me about this hotel.
- The moths on the bed, yikes!
- The shower stinks, and there are so many dusty spots around the room as well.
I really do hope that it was only my experience that turned out to be bad when I went to Horison Green Forest Bandung for a staycation, but based on my conversation with Gema the other day, it seems like a familiar experience at the property.
For me, I'd probably give a 4 out of 10 for Horison Green Forest Bandung, and I'm definitely not interested in staying there again.
Got a different experience when you stayed in the property? Share in the comment below, and cheerio! 😉
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